Cristiano Ronaldo has been left in an extremely awkward situation amid uncertainty over his future. The Portuguese forward has, so far, refused to return to pre-season training at Manchester United and has been actively urging his representatives to organize a summer transfer for him.
The downside is no major club wants to sign him at his age. The 37-year-old doesn’t have much more left in his tank and his enormous wages make signing him a real hassle. Chelsea have refused a move for him, while Real Madrid have also turned down a potential return. At this stage, it looks like Ronaldo will have to spend the upcoming season at Old Trafford.
While he may begrudgingly do so, Cristiano could also seek a high-profile transfer next year when his contract expires. So here we’ll look at three destinations for Ronaldo in the 2023 summer transfer window.
Ronaldo to light up Inter Milan next year?
There might be a sense of “unfinished business” in Ronaldo’s mind when it comes to Serie A. He haphazardly left Juventus last year after the arrival of Massimiliano Allegri after longing for a change in venue.
But after not having the best of time back at United, he could crave a return to Italy and even wait for it if needed. Next year, Inter Milan are set to lose Romelu Lukaku as he only joined on a season-long loan from Chelsea.
They might seek a new centre-forward and might be willing to gamble on a short-term deal for the Portuguese forward. Ronaldo, even if he’ll be 38 then, can still elevate Inter’s attack and has already proven himself an elite goal-scorer in Serie A — having scored 81 goals in 98 appearances.
With Cristiano likely to become a free agent next season, Inter won’t have to pay a transfer fee for him and can help add a new dimension to their attack.
A blockbuster move to PSG
PSG were reportedly offered the chance to sign Ronaldo in the summer, but refused it (as per ESPN). That’s because they don’t feel he’ll be an ideal fit for the squad right now, nor can they fit his massive salary into their inflated wage bill. But a lot can change in a year.
If Ronaldo is again available in 2023, PSG might be tempted to move for him. Lionel Messi could leave after his contract expires, which would have them needing a superstar.
PSG are craving Champions League success and Ronaldo is “Mr. Champions League” himself, having won it five times and being the competition’s highest-ever scorer. Cristiano would probably be tempted by a move to PSG, which can help improve his brand and further extend his iconic legacy.
Potential return to Juventus
Ronaldo left Juventus in unfortunate terms last year. He wasn’t clear about the club’s ambitions after a trophyless campaign in the 2020/21 season. Juventus were undergoing financial issues and wanted to get him off their wage bill.
But a return to Turin could be a possibility for Ronaldo next year. Juventus are strengthening their squad with some impressive signings, having roped in the likes of Paul Pogba and Angel di Maria this summer.
They are likely to push for a Champions League title in years to come and need the experience of someone like Cristiano to do so. Ronaldo can join on a free transfer, especially if he agrees to reduce his wages to fit their structure. After enjoying a pretty good spell with Juventus last time, Ronaldo can complete the unfulfilled objectives and have his final hurrah with the Bianconeri.